How To Grow Borecole
How To Grow Borecole
Borecole or kale as it is otherwise known is one of the hardiest brassicas that you can plant, and taste great either raw in salad, boiled like a normal vegetable, or even fried. Although it does not like heat and it likes an open position rather than a shady position, and due it liking cooler temperatures it is ideal for growing in northern Europe.
Borecole is one of the toughest brassicas that you can grow and as such can put up with a lot of abuse. It likes well matured nitrogen rich soil, that is well drained (But moisture retentive), and hence the addition of well rotted manure will help things along well, as will the addition of a nitrogen based liquid fertilizer during its growing period.
Borecole does not take well to root movement and so is best sown in place, however the slugs seem to love it and so the ubiquitous slug pellets will be needed. The seeds can be sown from April to May and should be sown around 1 inch deep and 3 inches apart. Of note is that whilst hardy Borecole is very water hungry in dry weather and to avoid the plants getting tough they need a lot of water. They are also fairly frost resistant and can be harvested anytime from November to April the next year, indeed many gardeners think they taster better after a good bit of frost.
Also of note is borecole is prone to getting clubroot and as such you should use a 2 to 3 years rotation to avoid clubroot occurring. This can be a very serious problem as it can last for up to 20 years. It can be avoided with the following tips: –
Well drained soil
2 to 3 year crop rotation
Ensuring the soil has a high acid level to pH7 or higher
Adding well rotted manure each year
When it comes to harvesting borecole slice through the roots with a sharp knife about 1 to 2 inches above the base of the plant, it actually is best preserved by leaving it outside as it is in general harvested in Winter. Or it can be stored in the fridge for 1 to 2 weeks, or it can also be frozen much the same as broccoli. Once it has been harvested the plants can be left in the ground and will start growing more leaves in around 2 weeks.
Borecole is easy to grow but see Borecole Pests And Diseases if you have any problems